Dietitian with client

Want to eat right? Help is at hand.

Keen to take better care of yourself? What you eat and how you do it are just as important as keeping up your exercise.

If you’ve started looking around for ways to eat smarter, you’re probably feeling like most Queenslanders – a little bombarded and confused. There is so much information floating around on the internet and in newspapers and magazines. Not to mention how easy it is to get a little lost and stuck in your ways….

But who do you turn to for help if you need pointers or expert advice? A Dietitian, that’s who! A Dietitian can help you make clever choices on your food intake. Choices that are tailored to your needs and can help you feel happier and healthier.

By changing what and how you’re eating, they can give you a really good shot at improving your general health and wellbeing and preventing illness (you have to stick at it, of course). A Dietitian can also help if you’ve got a goal in mind, or a medical condition to deal with like diabetes, heart disease, cancer, food allergies and intolerances.

We could all probably benefit from eating a little better, simply because eating well benefits you in so many ways.

Seeing a Dietitian can really make you feel great.

They’ll give you a serve of the food and nutrition information that’s perfect for you!

Dietitians can also help professional athletes, and those who are interested in fitness, eat better and achieve their goals.

How dietitians can help you

Dietitians can help you by

  • Examining your individual dietary needs
  • Assessing your eating patterns
  • Developing a personalised eating plan
  • Supporting you in making healthy food choices
  • Giving you advice on the right supplements

If you’re not quite sure how Dietitians work their magic, let us explain: Dietitians simply turn the latest scientific information into practical advice about what to eat. They know the nutritional qualities and value of virtually everything we swallow. (Luckily air is kilojoule free!)

They’ve got serious credentials too. They’re university qualified with degrees from courses endorsed by their official industry body: the Dietitians Association of Australia (DAA).

But what will they get you to do? Most likely, a Dietitian will recommend sensible and sustainable changes to what and how you eat. They might also give you practical advice like weekly menus, new foods you could try, tips for shopping and food preparation, and recipes.

Finding a Dietitian

When choosing a Dietitian, be sure to check their qualifications – look for the APD credential which stands for Accredited Practising Dietitian.
You can make an appointment with a private practice Dietitian without a referral from a GP.
Finding one is as easy as:

  • Calling the APD hotline on 1800 812 942
  • Clicking here to search Dietitians Association of Australia members
  • Asking your friendly local GP for a recommendation
  • Also, some community health centres have a dietitian on staff

Questions Anyone?

What happens when I see a Dietitian?
On your first meeting, your Dietitian will

  • Discuss the reason for your visit
  • Ask detailed questions about your current diet, exercise habits, general health and lifestyle.
  • Take some measurements (including height, weight and waist circumference)
  • Work with you to plan goals and strategies for improving your health

Follow-up appointments
On subsequent visits, your Dietitian will

  • Ask questions to see what progress you have made towards your goals
  • Take your measurements again
  • If need be, recommend new strategies to help you achieve your goals

What does it cost?
Treatment costs vary depending on the services you get. You might be able to claim part or all of the cost through Medicare or rebates from your private health fund.

Medicare
Medicare provides some rebates for allied health services like seeing a Dietitian but these rebates have some conditions. Please do check with Medicare for full details.

Private health fund rebates
Most private health funds provide rebates for allied health service providers including Dietitians. The rebate amount and claim limits are different for every fund. Get in touch with your fund to check your entitlements.

Good luck. The right Dietitian could be just what you need.